I can be an intense, and passionate person. I articulate my thoughts and feelings in a way that for most new people in my life seems attractive, confident, and refreshing. I approach people and their relationships in a thoughtful, attentive, and what comes across as a well-balanced way that gives off the impression that it just comes naturally to me. The truth is, it took me decades to reach this point. To understand myself, and articulate my thoughts and feelings in such a way that I know exactly when to ask for a hug, ask for space, or just break down and say I have no idea what I need and require help or support.
Now, having this personality is refreshing to people. I blossom in one on one conversations, and usually, I can get a persons life story or deepest secrets within a first meeting. And the range of people I meet this way is fascinating and incredible. But for purposes of this post, I need to shed light on a specific personality type that has plagued me, over and over again, the nice guy.
When I meet a nice guy I usually steer clear of them, because I will admit, I know the pattern our friendship will take, and I never like the final outcome. First, we will become super fast friends. He will feel an incredible high knowing I shared something intimate about my life, and will cling onto that. He will share, what he feels is similar information and create this overly powerful bond in his head. Instead of feeling that we are equals, he will start to idolize or fantasize that what we have is special and unique. And it is. But… there is a catch. Men like this, do not recognize that the are getting a high from this. And that they crave this feeling of being special. So they start asking more intimate questions. They start to delve deeper into your world, in an almost invasive way. Not out of malice but to re-play that initial feeling. And they poke, and prod into your relationship looking for cracks and dirt so that they can “return the favor” and help you solve some monumental moment in your life.
They, in short, feed off of your negative situation and crave it more and more. They want to feel special, and the problem is that it is not in your accomplishments but in your failures. That’s where their emotional boost comes through most strongly. That’s the role they have found in your life, and the experience that they want to relive.
Now, as I mentioned, I avoid these people whenever possible because the reality for me, is I hate having the confrontations with these people. A few more noteworthy ones include, telling a guy exactly what he has been doing and watching him just melt. It was gut wrenching and I couldn’t handle it. Or the guy who got so angry that he called me a tease, and bitch, and well… it got really messy. Then there was the guy that I tried to coach and deal with more gently. For this particular guy I ended up having to finally end the friendship because I got so sick and tired of calling out his bad behaviour because he was incapable of breaking this cycle. And the more I write these the reactions the more I solidify why I just am not equipped to handle this personality type. It’s icky for me, and I would rather just close the door from the onset.
But, here I sit, realizing that there are situations that I cannot avoid. Co-workers, mutual friends, and the worst of them all, the men who I thought were normal friends, but see opportunity in something I shared and basically preditorially pounce, thereby changing the entire relationship dynamic, the wolf in sheep’s clothing, feigning as the nice guy to get closer to me.
So, let me be clear, I believe that the majority of people can
change their behaviour once they recognize it for what it is and actually see
value in overcoming it. I’m an optimist
and do see overall good in individuals. From what I have seen, people are mostly devastated
when I point out this energy cycle to them, and honestly, I don’t enjoy
crushing people like that, because I do not have the energy, expertise, or
drive to help anyone like this fix themselves.
This is a hard limit for me. And
why, whenever I have full control, I give a hard NOPE to this particular negative
thriving person (again, I know it’s not on purpose, but that doesn’t make it
better!). So, what then do I do with the
unavoidable nice guys? What do I say to
them? Why do I constantly have to be
clear, put them in their place, or worse, re draw lines in our friendship to
ensure I don’t become prey to their need to “just help me”? I am not someone who wants pity. I just want equality in my friendships and authentic
communication. I want to be free to vent
about another person in my life without having a reaction of judgment, and the horrible
“if I were you” or the life draining sentiment of “ I would never treat you
Can we just be there for each other during the rough times, and build each other up on the day to day? Can we find a way to communicate without putting others down? Or better yet, realize that humans have a great capacity to hold more than one soul dear in their lives. We don’t need to always vie for that one coveted spot of primary or best friend, or any other of these titles. Just be a good friend, a good person, and stop the cycle of feeding off of negativity!
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First off, I am a survivor and not a victim. I say that out loud to myself from time to time, because I find it helps me regain my power and control over the situation that I found myself in a few years ago (sorry I cannot give a specific timeline due to circumstance outside of my control). Why did it take me so long to come out and write about it? Because, it was difficult for me to put a label on it, and publicly address what happened to me, especially as, until recently, many of the people I considered extended family read my blog and knew this man. The silly thing is, the fear of not writing this post, is a key reason why I need to. I need to break any and all control that my former mentor, and confident has/had over me, and I need to do it from a place of serenity and autonomy, and try not to let the fear of him getting upset and isolating me any further (I still am keeping his full identity anonymous as this is about healing and not about starting a witch hunt). This is my experience as I am Breaking free from gaslighting.
What is Gaslighting?
When I first read about the term gaslighting, I dismissed it as the latest buzzword. A trend to label behaviour that was most likely a form of abuse and required a person to just get out of the situation. For the most part, I dismiss labels, and by doing that I feel that I can be more fluid and not allow them to define or trap me. However, as I recently discovered, I needed this term in my life, to come to full terms with what was happening to me, and just how bad things were about to get. If you want a fuller description of gaslighting, please check out this link, but for the context of this post it is someone who never apologizes without making you feel guilty. It is someone who makes you feel isolated and that everything wrong is your fault, and claims to love you unconditionally with caveats that are completely unachievable. They lie repeatedly, refuse to take any personal responsibility, and what for me was even worse, they tell everyone that you are the crazy one. Honestly, there were times that the magnitude of how cruel the whole situation was, I could barely catch my breath. And being isolated from all my family friends, and not realizing how deep the isolation actually went, I would naively turn to them for help and end up making an even bigger hole for myself, by proving that I was the crazy one who was off kilter.
All I can say, is that even though he tried numerous times
to turn my partner against me, and drive a wedge between us, my partner has the
most incredible B.S. detector I have ever met and he called him out for exactly
what he was, and what he was doing to me.
Without my partner, I may have crumbled and gone crawling back to this
man because I honestly was left with, a feeling of complete nothingness.
Where Am I Now?
While I still feel the weight from time to time of this person’s years of abuse, and occasionally find myself asking if I am stupid or weak, I have far more good days than bad. I have incredible friends who ensure I do not feel alone, and are happy just to sit in silence sipping a beer with me if I need to, sometimes it’s not enough. There are moments, that I dream about him, and honestly wake up believing that things are back to how I idealized they were when I was younger. I feel this incredible calm, that maybe this nightmare I have lived is over, and I am free. I go back and forth between fantasy and reality, sometimes worried that I will never know the truth. I am not fully free of this man, and for my mental sanity, I have to just accept that for the time being and continue to find peace in what I can control. And that, is how I move forward with my life, and how I can forgive myself for living so long with the mental hell of my past.
And please, out of respect for me, and my families privacy as I continue to work through this difficult time, do not guess who this person is, or try and reach out to that individual. There is zero good that can come from that. And I have learned that the only person that I can control is myself. I am not looking for apologies, answers, or even acknowledgment. I am simply taking care of my own mental health by writing this very painful post out, and continuing to heal with purpose.
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Aka: Want to Start a Sex Blog? A Few Tips/Tricks and Mistakes I Have Made Blogging about Breaking Away From Monogamy
I started blogging in the summer of 2011 because I had a personal mission to work through a major problem I was facing in my life, and in my overconfident brain I figured a few people would be curious about the subject matter: non-monogamy. When I wrote my first post, as I’m sure a few of you have, it was from a place of heartbreak. I was motivated by a single thought, which was simply to write my story. As a result, I did zero research into making a blog readable, successful, profitable, or even clickable or shareable. I basically went in blind, thinking my clear mission statement would be enough for everything else to fall into place, whatever that ended up being. It turns out, it wasn’t. So let me share with you a few practical tips that I have learned over the years, often as a result of going in the completely wrong direction, and wherever I can, I will post practical links that will actually help you, especially if you want to talk about things that are taboo (affiliate links will be a part of this post, and do help me earn a small commission to cover my hosting fees, but I will get more into that shortly).
First things first, the reason this post is a little different to many “how do I write a blog post” is that I am gearing this towards taboo subject matter and the specific hurdles when you write about the word sex. So let’s get started with the first lesson I learned: Anonymity
Picking Your Name or Title
When I first got started, I used an alias, as so many out there choose to do. The thing was, I picked an alias that is in a language foreign to many of my readers. I chose, @k-ghislaine (which you can easily click to follow me on Twitter), and while it is meaningful to me, it is completely unsearchable, pronounceable, and instantly I created a situation where I would have to self-promote everything I put out. Now this was a choice I made consciously, and thought it would protect my work/life/relationship status. However, with that being the focus, what did I immediately do? Oh that’s right, I mass e-mailed the link to everyone in my address book, and posted the blog link on Facebook, under my own personal account. The take away? Choose your target, and decide how you are going to use your blog, podcast, or whatever medium that shares your unique message. And think beyond the heartache towards the scale-ability factor because you never know where something like this may take you. And this holds true for your blogs name, domain, and basically every social media handle you choose, so choose wisely.
Sex Positive Monetization
I have zero doubt that this is the main reason that you are reading this post. And the thing about this is, I am in no way pro yet. I make enough to cover all my fees incurred, and occasionally a little more. My blog, has always be like a journal for me, where if it makes a little that’s a bonus, but if not, that’s totally OK too, I will still blog. That being said, I know how daunting it can be to start researching ways to actually monetize your content, especially if you have nudity, talk about anything taboo, or dare I say, use the word sex in any way shape or form. When you get started, you are faced with a zillion and one hurdles, especially once you start reading the fine print on all the monetization sites available or affiliate programs that mainstream content creators have access to. Please don’t let that get you down, you still have options, it just might take a little more work.
One of the first paths I took that actually generated a little financial interest in my blog was doing a sex toy review. And not just any toy, a couple’s toy! Honestly, it was a lot of fun. I loved the anticipation of waiting for the new toy, testing it out, and ultimately writing the post. I totally understand the appeal of it, and would happily do one again in the future. But I would caution you about one thing, things are changing with toy reviews. You are very limited as to the pictures you take, where you can share them on social media, and the biggest reason I don’t do many is the competition aspect. There are so many incredible toy reviewers out there and honestly, I don’t feel like I offer anything unique to that discussion. In summary, product reviews are amazing, just make sure you offer something new, exciting, or unique to your audience or you will not retain them.
The second path I took, and take, is writing sponsored posts, or paid blogs for other sites. This is my clear favorite, as I love the exposure and the community building this brings. Ultimately, my goals are different than many out there, but if you really hustle to create incredible content, this works really well. There are some incredible resources out there when it comes to pitching, and if you would like me to share some insight on my techniques feel free to comment or reach out to me via whichever social media you found me on!
And finally the third, which is affiliate links (Such as this one for lube, sex toys, and condoms!) . Now these can be tricky to find for those who talk about sex in any depth beyond what I do. The reason I notice that is I have always walked a fine line between education and sharing sexy adventures. And that is both a blessing and a curse when it comes to banners or links that will actually pay me out. If you write sexualized content, you can find affiliate links on toy sites, P&%N pages, and with other promoters of the more XXX content. If you simply try to educate, you can find safe sex banners, STD testing sites, and that sort of thing. The key here, is to think outside of the box. What does your site say, and what products would you be happy to buy yourself and then promote? So, reach out to known sex positive industries, or sign up to affiliate sites specifically catered to sex and industry. There are a few out there, you just have to be a little savvy when searching them. And please, for the love of all that is holy, research the company first. It’s not worth making big bucks if your spreading hate, misinformation, or something that goes against your messages key values. That makes you a sellout and you will NOT retain traffic. If you go on my home page you will see a few banners from companies I love working with, but again, those may not work for the type of content you are creating. So be reasonable. It is not enough to just put up a banner and then watch the money roll in. Monetization takes special work, especially with the word Sex.
Writing content that people give a damn about is tough, even when your subject matter is titillating. And the major factor for this is people en masse are scared of sex. Individuals are typically rational, but group people in a room, and restrictions come at you from every angle. As a result, you will run into many issues when trying to spread your content. There are quite a few sites who won’t even take your money, or allow you to collect your hard earned dollars as a direct result of your subject matter. My biggest word of wisdom here is to read the fine print. Sure a site like Amazon may allow you sign up to be an affiliate, but if there is nudity anywhere, you are going to have a difficult time collecting your earnings. And that goes for all social media that you use. Understanding the restrictions is key to maximizing your influence (And no, I don’t mean be an influencer, but know your content may have an impact on someone so be mindful).
What has made me the most successful in getting noticed you may ask? The answer, is not caring what other people think and posting content that makes me feel like a whole human being. On each of my social media accounts I find meaning in actually connecting with people and not using it as just a platform to spam people with my words. There are quite a few studies right now to measure peoples happiness levels in conjunction to their social media usage and guys, I must say, there is a lot of truth to this. Whenever I portray myself as an object, or just a brand, I become miserable and need more and more frequent social media breaks. Whereas, when I am actively engaged, learning, reading others stuff, and building community I absolutely love it! So the takeaway, be mindful when you’re trying to get your work noticed. Don’t let the goal of becoming internet famous supersede your mental health. Better to have a few amazing fans, than a multitude of trolls.
Once you do find your stride, and have people who care enough to share, engage, or follow you, I highly recommend setting up a Patreon page. Without question, this has been the most rewarding experience for me. I cry (happy tears) with every new subscriber, even the ones who only pledge for a few hours. It’s incredible know that there are people out there who love your work enough to pledge a little bit of money to it. And with Patreon, you can make it your own and choose rewards that actually matter to your fans. I love the freedom of it all, and for me, I use it mostly to show off all the behind the scenes stuff I can’t put on my blog. But don’t let that sway you. Make your content anyway you choose!
When I first started blogging (My blogging reason), I used a free site with Blogspot. It was Google based and included SEO and rankings. It was a glorious. Then, tragedy struck. I gained a little bit of popularity and got flagged for my content. I had flown under the radar for years, even using adsense, but I think those days are pretty much over. With all the new restrictions and fears over sex, I quickly had to go self hosted, build a new site to maintain my own freedom of expression. It seemed like overnight I had to basically learn everything about building a site, hosting it, and my latest endeavor… SEO.
Honestly, for me, this is my current pet project. I spend a few minutes every day learning new tips/tricks to increase my organic views. And holy crap, the most interesting thing I have learned, is just how incredibly bad my blogspot site was! And how, in the blogging world, I have pretty much done everything wrong. Why do I share that? Because it is OK. I am learning from this, and I am so proud to have loyal readers who enjoyed my content even though the presentation was absolute garbage. So don’t feel bad, ever! If the content is something you take pride of, everything else will follow.
If you enjoyed this post, by all means, reach out! And if you have questions, want to start your own blog, or shift over to a self hosted site, I have written 3 sites which are live and am working on my fourth. If you need a graphic designer, I am currently working with one who is incredible and the perfect match for this sex positive blogger and her vision. Again, reach out. I would love to share my knowledge and help you succeed where I have failed, or in rare instances succeeded.
There is always more to learn, and I hope in a few years, I can write one of these with all the new lessons I have learned, because knowledge is power, and should always be shared!
In my last post, I asked “why are humans so strict about monogamy, and yet so flexible when it comes to animals” which if you haven’t read, please take a moment to do so here. Perfect, now let’s get right into the heart of the matter, defining monogamy: cheating, and infidelity in animals and humans. Cheating and infidelity are the primary culprits or indicators for the failing of monogamy, and could lead us into learning more about our human definition of the word, why it came to be, and where this will take our species moving forward.
We have all asked our selves, why do we cheat at some point or another in our lives. In fact, I asked pointedly, Why Do Men Cheat? Our Evolution Ignored, back in 2013. And it comes up time and time again. We as a species, cheat. And when we cheat, we question our monogamy. But what if, we questioned our monogamy prior to cheating? What if we understood our species, and need for procreation and survivability of our genetic core or at a level beyond how we were raised? Could that information lead us to loosen our definition of monogamy to something more in line with the one we use in the animal kingdom?
Writing this, I still feel that gut reaction, that I was raised with monogamy and cheating is basically evil. We loath the cheaters, and strive for the monogamous ideal. But in nature, that is not the best practice for species survival. In fact, if monogamy was as strict as it is in humans, the genetic variability would be reduced and many species would have perished. Think of this in a pack of lions for example. If the alpha was the only one to successfully mate with the lioness’s then only his genes would be passed down to the next pack. Within one generation there would be 50% less genetic variability available to pass on. That’s huge. So, instead, the alpha tries diligently to impregnate all the females, but thankfully he’s got to sleep sometime. And the polygamously dominated society gets an influx of genetic material from outlying lions and the few betas in the pride, pouncing quite literally on an unsuspecting lioness. Therefore, providing one example where monogamy would just not work from a survival standpoint no matter how attractive having a harem may be.
Now perhaps you’re thinking that this example is not fair because
no one believes lions are monogamous. So
let’s look at a monogamous animal grouping, the black vultures. Here, the species practices social monogamy
for the entire mating and raising of young, and actually attack any bird
involved in infidelity. But again, the
key here is social monogamy, whereby the animals are only pair bonded for the duration
of rearing offspring which is about 8 months.
Compare that to 18 years in humans and we have a huge problem, which
almost everyone has faced in their lifetime.
How is one expected to be with only one human being for an entire 18
years, if we agreed to hold ourselves to a universal definition of monogamy?
I for one, was raised to believe this was possible. But once I got into the real world, the likelihood
of that actually happening quickly deteriorated. Even with my first long term partner, with
whom I lost my virginity, and spent nearly 9 years with, I still strayed. I fully embraced monogamy, yet, I could not
live up to the ideal standard. And to
come full circle, at that point in time, I never questioned if I was a
monogamous human or not. I wanted to be,
I was raised to be, and I tried really, really hard, so I must have been monogamous
right? The evidence of course was contrary,
just as it is with our animal counterparts.
As I mentioned, straying from time to time, is part of animal
behaviour and still allows the pair to be labeled socially monogamous. Humans who stray from time to time are
labelled cheaters, philanderers, and if then embrace this as part of who they
are, a whole new spectrum arises called non-monogamy. So again, what if we
questioned our monogamy prior to infidelity?
What would the look like? And has
there been a point in our human evolution where monogamy was not the standard
definition of human bonding? Further,
how important is monogamy to the survival of the human race?
These are the questions I will continue to ask over the
coming weeks. So please stay tuned,
like, share, and as always, feel free to ask your own questions via Twitter, Facebook,
or in the comment section of this blog.
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False sex educators and the truth about female orgasms.
If you follow me on Twitter then you most likely have seen the interactions I have had over the last few months with a little account run by Jane. If not, here is a quick rundown. Jane likes to self promote herself as a sex educator and brags that she has over 20 years investigating everything to do with the female orgasm. She has no education in the field, instead she is financially so well off that she does this as a passion project and won’t let silly things like science get in her way. She constantly does shout-outs pleading with any women who orgasms to reach out, and talk to her about them, because according to her “women are terrified when talking about orgasms” “and only orgasm as part of the male fantasy”. When I started following her she had an impressive 208K following count, was asking lots of questions and seemed to be fairly responsive. I love reading anything to do with sex, and a women doing research on orgasms seemed like a really cool account to follow.
But then, it got a little weird. I remember reading one of her little quips
which stated that a woman cannot orgasm through her cervix because it was not a
sex stimulator and any women who claims to do so does not actually know what on
orgasm is. Hmm… Well that just doesn’t
seem right. And with a few internet
searches of actual scientific research I found that this is not factually
based. Phew, my body is not wrong according to science and I do know what an
orgasm is. So, I did my due diligence
and wrote to her about my own experience with being multi-orgasmic and a few
links to the research I had just done.
And very swiftly she removed herself as a follower of mine and I moved
on with my life… until late last year when her name popped up again.
So I went onto her feed looking for information on any recent research she had about orgasms. One of my early posts on Quality versus Quantity of my own orgasms is a piece that I always wanted to expand a on, so I will be honest, I just filtered her many posts looking primarily for orgasm research. But what I found instead was alarming. She mentioned that women only get turned on by fantasy and erotica, and that physical stimulation is not a real orgasm in women. She went onto say that vibrators were an invention of the sex industry to help women fake orgasm and what a female achieves with one is not authentic. After being horrified for a few moments, I went on a quick, then filed her under the, “must be a troll” category and tried to get on with my life.
But honestly, with that many followers and so many mutual
sex positive friends in common, I began to doubt. Why would all these people be following her
too? I mean, I will be honest, when I
first came across her account I questioned the validity of my own orgasms and
actually did some research. So, while a
troll she may be, this was bordering on dangerous. A self promoted sex educator who spouts
things that sound click baity could actually be doing harm to those looking for
help or knowledge. And that’s when I
decided to start quoting, questioning and rallying a few people to take
notice. And after a few weeks, I am very
proud to say it worked.
I was blocked from her within the week of my mission. It turns out that she doesn’t accept anyone challenging her opinions. She believes that her ability to achieve orgasm once every two weeks makes her special and a unique individual, and therefor anyone who achieves more than that is misguided, uniformed, faking it, or just plain lying.
Being as open as I am, I take great offence in being called a liar. I can achieve multiple orgasms in a single session, in a wide varieties of ways including clitoral, internally (deep and… well not always so deep), and externally on various parts of the erogenous zones on my body. I am not including this to brag, but one of her accounts key points is that women will not talk about orgasms, that we afraid, ashamed, or just don’t achieve it, so it must be a myth for the majority. And I am hear to say loudly and proudly that each of us achieves sexual satisfaction in our own ways. They should all be celebrated, and explored and repeated whenever possible. So, thank you all for being part of this amazing sex positive community, and for those who interacted with her, thank you for asking questions, and sharing your own experiences. I hear and see your words!
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